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Rustic Blue Guide to the Ronda Mountains

The wild and rugged tract of mountains which surrounds Ronda offers one of Andalucía's stunning visual experiences …

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The village of Colmenar (Estacion de Gaucín) in the valley below The village of Gaucín Looking down the Genil valley Ronda and its dizzy gorge A pastoral scene La Plaza del Socorro in the centre of Ronda Looking over the rooftops

Map of region

The Ronda Mountains

Map of Spain showing The Ronda Mountains region.

The Ronda Mountains

Description

A rich tapestry

Beautiful valleys flanked by dramatic cliff faces, caves etched into the rocks, bubbling brooks lined with colourful flowers … the Ronda Mountains has it all.

Jagged formations of deeply weathered limestone rise sharply above ancient groves of olives and almonds, flocks of sheep and goats graze the hillsides, eagles and vultures ride the winds high above. The scenery seems to change with every turn in the road and it is easy to see why the last of the 'bandaleros' were able to escape capture in this dramatic terrain.

Although not particularly high (the highest peak is 1,919 metres above sea level), the mountain landscape is impressive, a rich tapestry of profound valleys flanked by dramatic cliff faces, caves etched into the rocks and bubbling brooks lined with colourful flowers. The abyss known as the "Gesm" is the third deepest in the world. For anyone interested in botany and birdlife there are riches indeed.

The Romantic movement found the area a source of much inspiration and a visit to the town of Ronda became an essential part of any 'grand tour' through Spain. It appealed, too, to the officers of Gibraltar garrison who would ride up to Ronda to escape from the coastal heat.

So near, yet so far

The contrast with the busy beaches and bustling lifestyles on the Mediterranean coast, less than an hour's drive to the south, could hardly be greater.

The town's lofty position (almost 3,000 feet above sea level) means that even in mid-summer a cooling breeze often blows across the town. And although large numbers of visitors flock in from the resorts of the Costa del Sol, by mid-afternoon the buses are lumbering back down the hill and the town once again becomes a sleepy market town - and one of the most beautiful in Europe.

The contrast with the busy beaches of the Mediterranean, less than an hour's drive to the south from Ronda, could hardly be greater. Just yards from the town's famous bridge and bullring (the oldest in the world) are restaurants and bars where not a word of English is spoken, where the prices are right and where local folk will be interested by your presence and will certainly try to engage you in conversation.

To the east and west of the town are the natural parks of the Sierra de las Nieves (the mountains of the snows) and Grazalema where the possibilities for walking are endless. Many of these (often ancient) walking routes have recently been waymarked.

'Real Spain'

The Ronda Mountains is an area of outstanding natural beauty which offers a delightful slice of Spanish life at every twist and turn.

Each of the whitewashed villages in the mountains surrounding Ronda seems to have a character of its own. The organic, inward-looking houses of these places are strongly reminiscent of those of the Berber hill farmers who settled this area during the Moorish period.

Another spectacularly beautiful mountain village is Gaucín which enjoys sweeping views across the mountains to Gibraltar and the coast to the Rif Mountains of North Africa.

Once a major Roman settlement with a magnificent castle which dates back to these pre-Arabic times, the centre of the village is a pretty tangle of narrow, twisting streets, once a haven for brandy and tobacco smugglers. Today it's a little more civilized, a pleasing combination of traditional Andaluz and international amenities.

The Ronda Mountains is an area which really does offer you a taste of the much-touted 'Real Spain' an area which has made remarkably few concessions to mainstream tourism.

There is stacks to see and do in addition to the old mansion houses and churches of Ronda. You could visit the Pileta cave with its paleolithic cave art, you can take a balloon flight, ride, walk and visit any number of interesting villages.

To the north lies Sevilla, the magical, mesmerising capital of Andalucía. Should fancy a day on the beach, from most of our properties you'll be an hour or less away from the Mediterranean Sea.

And there's always Morocco …

Towns & Villages

Towns and Villages

Ronda

Famous worldwide for its dramatic views and for the bridge which straddles the extraordinary gorge which divides the town, Ronda is full of character and charm. With its mansion houses, quaint narrow streets, museums and Spain's oldest bullring, it is well worth visiting …

Gaucin

A spectacularly beautiful mountain village commanding sweeping views to Gibraltar and the Rif mountains of North Africa. A haven in the hills where you can enjoy the easy pace of Andalusian rural life, idle strolls, leisurely drinks and al fresco suppers in jasmine-scented air …

Holiday villas

Holiday villas in the Ronda Mountains

  • ZC 16 - Sleeps 4/5

    Offering country-style living at its absolute best, this really comfortable family home has charm, joy and rustic beauty in abundance. The pool and its surroundings are absolutely breathtaking. As one client put it, "this is probably the closest place to heaven we've visited".

    from 1,190€ to 2,750€

  • ZC 67 - Sleeps 6

    Classic Spanish style is the order of the day here at this stylishly converted farmhouse set deep in the glorious countryside to the west of Gaucín village. Very comfortable and with a delightfully restful ambience it is an enchanting villa.

    from 980€ to 2,140€

  • ZC 22 - Sleeps 6

    This old farmers cottage in a wonderful setting has been restored with great love and respect for tradition. The result is beautiful. Set deep within a sea of glorious natural splendour, here you will enjoy pastoral bliss, comfort and very real, rustic charm.

    from 830€ to 1,720€

  • ZC 42 - Sleeps 2 and a baby

    Described by one client as "the most beautiful house I've ever seen" this is a delectable place to hide away with a loved one. The perfect place for a first (or second) honeymoon …

    from 1,300€ to 1,560€

  • ZC 49 - Sleeps 8

    The originality of the property makes it a wonderful place to holiday in; the interior decor is tasteful yet relaxing, the luscious gardens are full of secret corners all with the most spectacular views of the village, surrounding mountains, the Straits of Gibraltar and, on a clear day, Morocco.

    from 2,360€ to 3,340€

  • ZC 60 - Sleeps 2

    This compellingly romantic hideaway for a couple has bags of rustic charm and a really beautiful, lawned garden hidden away in the trees behind the cottage. A wonderful place to be with your loved one. Utterly charming, it's a perfect honeymoon retreat.

    from 560€ to 1,120€

  • ZC 43 - Sleeps 12

    A truly beautiful home of the very highest quality. This magnificent cortijo crowns the top of its eight hectare domain with panoramic views as far as the eye can see. The architecture, Andalucian in style, is perfect for both indoor and outdoor living.

    from 3,960€ to 5,990€

  • ZC 14 - Sleeps 4

    Light and spacious, this stunning modern duplex apartment offers comfort, elegance and style ... and views all the way to Africa. Part of a small, quality private development everything has been designed to provide a beautiful living environment.

    910€

  • ZC 99 - Sleeps 8/9

    Secluded and peaceful, comfortable and relaxing, this is country living at its ultimate best. The setting is magical, deep in the majesty and glory of the Serranía de Ronda, 6 kilometres from pretty Gaucín village. The beautifully converted farmhouse does its location proud.

    from 2,420€ to 3,330€

  • ZC 76 - Sleeps 8 & 2 children

    In a beautiful valley just outside Ronda, this wonderful country house has joyous views, landscaped gardens and an irresistible 15 metre pool. Spacious, stylish and immaculately appointed, this is a family home which functions superbly.

    from 3,000€ to 4,400€

  • ZC 75 - Sleeps 4

    Soaking up the sunshine, taking a dip in the pool, reading under the dappled shade of an old olive tree, this is what a holiday is all about. In a beautiful valley just outside Ronda, this spacious villa has lovely gardens and a pool to match.

    from 1,100€ to 1,600€

  • ZC 109 - Sleeps 6 or 10

    The owners built this house with their own young family in mind so as well as being elegant and tasteful, facilities have been provided for a lot of fun as well! Ideally situated for access to town and outings to a vast number of attractions both locally and further afield.

    from 1,760€ to 3,120€

  • ZC 37 - Sleeps 10

    This country house is idyllic. Spacious and well appointed inside, its five acres of gardens and grounds are fabulous, a perfect setting for some of the most seductive and peaceful views in Andalucí­a. It epitomizes all that we expect from a perfect Andalusian holiday villa.

    from 3,630€ to 4,380€

  • ZC 31 - Sleeps 4, 8 or 10 + 4 children

    This thoroughly modern and inventively designed villa enjoys one of the most beautiful settings in Andalucí­a. Idyllic and peaceful, away from it all, there's nothing but glorious nature all around. The villa makes the very best of its wonderful location.

    from 1,920€ to 3,920€

  • ZC 15 - Sleeps 10

    From this secluded country house, set in its own 17 acres of pasture and ancient olive groves, you are within easy reach of the coast or the traditional inland villages of this region of Spain. Spacious, well equipped and attractively furnished, it's a quality, modern rental home.

    from 2,220€ to 4,980€

  • ZC 108 - Sleeps 8 + 1 child

    This villa is ideally located for those wanting to spend some time relaxing by the pool. Gaucín is close enough to enjoy of an evening and there are a plethora of activities and sites in this area of Spain should you wish to adventure further afield.

    from 1,220€ to 2,050€

  • ZC 97 - Sleeps 4

    This well-designed, well-equipped holiday home on its own 6 acre private estate overlooks the lush valley of the Guadiaro with stunning views to the mountains beyond. A perfect base for anyone who enjoys the peace and quiet of real Andalusian countryside.

    from 630€ to 1,500€

  • ZC 94 - Sleeps 8/9

    Enjoy "the good life" in sumptuous, unabashed luxury and very grand style. Exquisite furnishings, a fabulous indoor spa area (with heated pool, jacuzzi and sauna), a beautiful outdoor pool and a variety of lovely terraces are just some of the magnificent delights to enjoy here.

    from 3,150€ to 5,250€

  • ZC 25 - Sleeps 4 to 12 + 2 children

    Beautifully secluded and peaceful, combining the very best of traditional and modern styles, this is one of the most comfortable and relaxing villas in all Spain. The icing on the cake is its fabulous location with nothing but glorious nature all around. The 20 m pool isn't bad, either!

    From 2,220€ to 4,990€

  • ZC 17 - Sleeps 8 & 2 children

    "Simply perfect, fantastic in every way!". That's what guests say about this superb villa near Ronda which combines elegance, style and comfort in abundance with its inherent Spanish charm. A wonderful holiday home in a great location.

    from 3,010€ to 3,800€

  • ZC 54 - Sleeps 8 or 14

    This stylish villa has amazing views of the sierras. The lush garden features an impressive pool, cabaña-style summer house and veranda for al fresco dining, all set within a twenty-acre private estate. All-round luxury and modern comfort make this a perfect holiday retreat.

    from 3,750€ to 5,780€

  • ZC 33 - Sleeps 10 plus staff

    This magnificent, majestic mansion in the hills has real charisma and exquisite, grandiose style. One of the most stunning and spectacular houses in all Spain - in an equally glorious setting, it is impossible not to be captivated by its sumptuous elegance and comfort.

    from 6,740€ to 7,490€

  • ZC 104 - Sleeps 6 or 8

    Set in its own 2 hector private estate, just 2 kms from Gaucin, this country house boasts lush gardens, a large pool and superb views of the coast and Gibraltar. Step out into this beautiful part of Spain and explore or just stay in and absorb the delights this villa has to offer.

    from 2,140€ to 4,350€

  • ZC 24 - Sleeps 2 to 8

    This lovely old country house resides in splendid isolation within its own 90 acres of forest and farmland, one of the most seductive settings imaginable. Once a blacksmith´s forge and dwellings, it´s now as pretty as a picture.

    from 800€ to 2,400€

  • ZC 20 - Sleeps 2

    Informal and relaxing, this happy home is the perfect place to enjoy all that's good about living in a rural idyll. Just one kilometre from pretty Gaucín village, here you will wake up to a huge panorama of mountain majesty - it's wonderful. Available in summer months.

    1,500€

  • ZC 74 - Sleeps 6

    In a beautiful valley just outside Ronda, this spacious villa has lovely gardens and a pool to match. A great choice for all the family. Simply relaxing here, soaking up the sunshine, taking a refreshing dip or two in the pool, it's a perfect antidote to the stresses of modern life.

    from 1,300€ to 1,850€

  • ZC 64 - Sleeps 14+2

    From the moment you walk through the front door you realise this is not a regular holiday home. The understated style and comfort is unbeatable, every detail has been carefully considered. This truly superb villa is set in seven acres of natural parkland with views to the Gibraltar Straits and Africa beyond.

    from 2,680€ to 4,680€

  • ZC 73 - Sleeps 6

    Built around a Japanese garden patio, this villa has style! Minimalist elegance and panache in a magnificent mountain setting. Secluded and peaceful, deep in the hillsides of a 500 acre estate, this relaxing holiday villa has one of the most beautiful locations in all Spain.

    from 1,620€ to 2,360€

  • ZC 115 - Sleeps 6

    The owners of this holiday home love renovating houses and tastefully furnishing them with artefacts from their European travels. The results are always top notch. Decorated to be in keeping with Gaucin's historical past, this centrally located house has a private swimming pool and provision for garage parking.

    from 560€ to 1,060€

  • ZC 89 - Sleeps 6 or 8

    With a full size tennis court, sparkling pool and three hole practice golf course literally in your garden, this villa is ideal for the full family seeking a sporting holiday. But add to this the beautiful house and the proximity to Ronda and you have everything you need for a great break away.

    from 2,130€ to 2,490€

  • ZC 44 - Sleeps 12

    A traditional farmhouse in a magnificent countryside location just outside Gaucín village, it has been transformed into a wonderful country house full of beautiful art, antiques and Moroccan artefacts. If a house can be an adventure, this one is. Both fascinating and fabulous in equal measure.

    from 4,550€ to 6,760€

  • ZC 63 - Sleeps 2 to 6

    This new, top-quality and thoroughly modern apartment has been designed and furnished to provide a beautiful living environment. In the heart of one of the classic villages of Andalucía, it enjoys fabulous, panoramic views over Gibraltar to the Rif Mountains of Morocco.

    from 760€ to 1,150€

  • ZC 81 - Sleeps 8

    This cheerful, rustic-style country house is perched on a hillside high above the Rio Genal. It's a fabulous vantage point, the panoramic views far, wide and handsome. In this glorious pastoral scene it's all about old-style Andalusian country living.

    from 1,880€ to 3,130€

  • ZC 35 - Sleeps 2 or 4

    Full of character, neatly and comfortably decorated, this is one of two stylish houses converted from a 17th century olive mill. Situated in a traffic free street on the edge of the village, it offers comfortable accommodation and terrific views.

    from 450€ to 640€

  • ZC 53 - Sleeps 12

    Once a derelict farmhouse and a few outbuildings, this is now one of the most beautiful places to stay anywhere in Europe. No expense has been spared in transforming its numerous buildings into a spacious, stylish, luxurious holiday villa. The result is, quite simply … stunning.

    from 3,170€ to 7,590€

  • ZC 27 - Sleeps 4

    Light and spacious, bright and cheerful, this modern property is perfect for a family holiday. In open countryside, just a few minutes drive from historic Ronda, it's within easy walking distance of Arriate, one of several charming little villages which are close at hand.

    from 670€ to 1,090€

  • ZC 106 - Sleeps 10

    Originally belonging to a much larger estate, this country estate house is set in its own vineyards, only ten minutes' drive from the famous city of Ronda. The grounds comprise 3.5 hectares, 2 of those are given to grapes which the owner uses in his own bodega.

    from 940€ to 2,880€

  • ZC 93 - Sleeps 6

    This cleverly designed villa makes the very best of its wonderful situation, hidden away in leafy seclusion, beautiful mountain woodlands all around, views to the Mediterranean and Africa beyond. A stylish mix of traditional Spanish rustic with a contemporary twist.

    from 1,800€ to 2,980€

  • ZC 56 - Sleeps 4

    This sweet, custom-built holiday home is in an enviable position at the top end of the village, situated below the spectacular rocky outcrop with Gaucín's 12th Century Moorish castle high above. The pool is shared with the owner but he only takes an occasional dip.

    from 550€ to 830€

  • ZC 51 - Sleeps 4 or 6

    In the heart of picturesque Gaucín, this lovely village house is warm and welcoming. Traditional character and charm are delightfully combined with all mod cons to make a real home-from-home. Features include air conditioning in most rooms, central heating, satellite TV, a well appointed kitchen, a heated splash pool …

    from 750€ to 1,200€

  • ZC 10 - Sleeps 10

    Built at the foot of the famous Ronda Gorge, the villa is surrounded by acres of landscaped olive groves. The style of architecture is Andalucian with a distinctly Moorish inspired flavour - warm, welcoming and inviting … this is a villa you will never want to leave.

    from 3,130€ to 4,500€

  • ZC 107 - Sleeps 6 + 1

    Set on the outskirts of Gaucín, this pretty little cortijo cottage is perfect for those who want to spend their days relaxing by the pool and be able to walk home after an evening out in the delightful village of Gaucín.

    from 1,090€ to 1,840€

  • ZC 112 - Sleeps 10

    The entrance is through a conifer-lined drive to an Impressive low, wide, white villa with a lounging terrace at the front. Set in beautiful open country side, on the outskirts of the famous city of Ronda, you'll see cultivated fields with tractors and patchworks of ploughed land of all colours.

    from 1,540€ to 3,000€

  • ZC 78 - Sleeps 2 or 4

    Traditional character, attractive furnishings and good taste are combined to excellent effect in this divine little cottage. Pretty as a picture inside, it also has a lovely courtyard garden at the rear, as well as a roof terrace with fantastic views. It's charming.

    from 445€ to 630€

  • ZC 21 - Sleeps 6 or 8

    You will be enchanted by this gorgeous country house, gracefully designed and beautifully furnished - a home of the highest quality, comfort and charm. It looks through the mountains and down to the sea where the peaks of Africa and Europe merge under a deep blue sky.

    from 2,110€ to 3,600€

  • ZC 62 - Sleeps 2 or 4

    Light and sunny, this corner house in the classic white village of Gaucín enjoys views across some of Andalucìa's most wonderful countryside. Wood beamed ceilings and terracotta floor tiles give its thorough make-over that unmistakable Andaluz ambience.

    from 440€ to 530€

  • ZC 83 - Sleeps 2 or 8

    This superb designer villa combines luxury and comfort with charm and glorious countryside tranquility. That's hard, if not impossible, to beat! Exuding excellent good taste and imaginative style throughout, everything is of the very highest quality.

    from 1,150€ to 2,980€

  • ZC 12 - Sleeps 6 or 8

    Looking out from the forest above the little village to a heavenly panorama of mountain, hill and wooded slopes, this is an intimate, enjoyable and friendly holiday home. A great place to stay.

    from 1,300€ to 1,760€

  • ZC 77 - Sleeps 2 to 6

    In the heart of lovely Gaucín village, this is a fabulous house, rich in character, charm and style. Two properties imaginatively joined together to make one superb residence, the result is a really creative and attractive home.

    from 590€ to 2,020€

  • ZC 79 - Sleeps 12

    Within its own 14 acres of delightful countryside, this farmhouse has been completely restored and refurbished to the very highest standards. Spacious, stylish and very comfortable, it offers serene and understated luxury. A piece of paradise tucked away in the Andalusian hills.

    from 4,380€ to 7,980€

  • ZC 85 - Sleeps 6 or 8

    Wonderful views, the peace and quiet of the countryside, genuine rural charm, this delightful old farmhouse is a real gem! Tastefully refurbished over the years, it provides all the comforts of home yet remains what it has always been, an authentic farmhouse full of rustic joy.

    from 1,760€ to 3,300€

  • ZC 36 - Sleeps 2 to 6

    The location of this traditional townhouse can't be beaten. With everything that this delightful village has to offer within a short walk, as well as stunning views, splash pool and rooftop jacuzzi, it's an ideal holiday home for your stay in Gaucin.

    from 650€ to 1,170€

  • ZC 96 - Sleeps 14 + 1 child

    Although built in 2006, the feel of this villa is one of a traditional Spanish country house, with its terracotta pan-tiled roof, white walls, wrought ironwork and antique doors, the welcome is classic Andaluz. There are no other houses around, but you are still only a short drive from Ronda and all that it has to offer.

    from 6,650€ to 10,500€

  • ZC 68 - Sleeps 6 to 10

    Secluded and peaceful, deep in the gloriously forested hillsides of a superb, 500 acre estate, this quality holiday villa offers charm and eclectic (some might say eccentric) character in one of the most beautiful locations in rural Spain.

    from 1,840€ to 3,020€

  • ZC 86 - Sleeps 6 + 2 children

    The location of this ultra-modern villa for visiting Ronda just can't be beaten. The villa is only a ten minute drive from this famous city but is surrounded by 2.5 hectares of private olive groves. Combine the peace of a country holiday with the excitement of Ronda's Andalucian culture.

    from 3,830€ to 4,280€

  • ZC 61 - Sleeps 4/5

    With spectacular views of the mountains, this spacious, sunny holiday villa is located just outside Gaucín, one of the best loved white villages in Andalucía. It's comfortable and pretty, bright and cheerful, very nicely fitted throughout.

    from 1,110€ to 1,710€

  • ZC 45 - Sleeps 8

    Unlike any other in Andalucia. Inspired by the Majorcan retreat of Claudia Schiffer, the villa is set in a secluded spot within seven acres of private land. Light, bright and airy, it´s very spacious (320m²) and full of interest. Here, traditional Spain meets head on with contemporary design!

    from 2,420€ to 4,490€

More photos

More photos of the Ronda Mountains

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